Three suicide bombers opened fire at passengers with automatic rifles before blowing themselves up in Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport in the early hours of June 29, Joinfo.ua reports with reference to Hurriyet Daily News.
The attack was carried out in the arrivals section of the airport’s international terminal, and there might be foreigners among the victims, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said.
Meanwhile, a gag order has been issued on the attack.
Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ said after the incident that an attacker opened fire using an AK-47 assault rifle at the international terminal before detonating a suicide bomb.
Istanbul Gov. Vasip Şahin said law enforcement believed three militants had blown themselves up at the entrance to the terminal at the airport after police fired at them.
Hüseyin Tombul, who witnessed that attack, told Anadolu Agency that the explosion occurred while he was waiting at the airport’s arrivals Gate A.
He said after the explosion they were sheltered in a garage. “A second explosion happened at Gate B. Four of my friends lost their lives. There are lots of wounded,” he added.
An unconfirmed video shared on social media and reportedly shot during the Istanbul terror attack showed a police officer wounding an unidentified man. The footage then showed the wounded man lying on the ground before blowing himself up just seconds after the officer ran away.
Some flights to Atatürk Airport were diverted after the attack while the airport was shut down for at least five hours.
Flights had resumed by the morning of June 29, although there were still serious delays due to the backlog resulting from the attack.
Meanwhile, security measures have been increased at Istanbul’s Sabiha Gökçen airport, located on the Anatolian side, and the main intercity bus station in Esenler.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan released a statement on the attack, saying he “strongly condemned” it.
“We expect that a resolute stance against terrorist organizations should be adopted by the world and especially Western countries with their parliament, media and non-governmental organizations,” Erdoğan said in a statement, while stressing that Turkey would continue its fight against terrorism.
“Turkey will continue its fight against all terrorist organizations at all costs until the end of terrorism,” he said.